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Deadliest Catch's Josh Harris Reveals What He Felt When He Discovered His Dad's Charts

It was a sad day for fans of "Deadliest Catch" when they learned what happened to series veteran Captain Phil Harris. The original head of the F/V Cornelia Marie, the fisherman suffered a stroke during the filming the Season 6 in 2010 and died shortly thereafter. But while the late captain has been greatly missed both by his crewmates and watchers in the time after, his legacy and impact on "Deadliest Catch" is still unfolding to this day.

Roughly ten whole years after Harris' death, his son Josh, who took over as co-captain of the Cornelia Marie starting in Season 10 of "Deadliest Catch," discovered a series of old charts that had his father had left aboard the Cornelia Marie. The maps contained Phil's notes from when he had operated as a fisherman in Hawaii years earlier. The discovery quickly spurred Josh and his peers to develop a new spin-off called "Deadliest Catch: Bloodlines," which features the Harris son as he follows in his father's footsteps and enters the ahi tuna catching business in Hawaii. However, the act finding the charts was, in itself, a major moment for the "Deadliest Catch" star as well.

It was a strange moment for Josh

It's no surprise Josh Harris's discovery of his father's charts would ultimately lead to a heartwarming story about family, considering how vocal the "Deadliest Catch" star has been about continuing the late captain's legacy. 

"I just want to live with a good heart, be a good captain like he was ... and just have fun, even when it's crappy out there," Josh said in an interview with Entertainment Weekly.

Despite that fondness, the fisherman's initial reaction to finding the documents was far less rosy than one might expect. In an interview with Monsters and Critics, the crab catcher described the moment as "very creepy." 

"Seeing the old man's handwriting ... It's been a long time since I've seen that" Josh said. "So it was like, 'What the hell am I looking at? Why are these charts on the boat?'"

Even once the fishing pro had made sense of the charts, he wasn't immediately serious about pursuing the matter in any greater capacity. Fortunately, what started as a casual idea about checking out the fishing business in Hawaii quickly gained traction, giving the captain a new way to honor his father's legacy and giving "Deadliest Catch" viewers a new show to tune in for (even if some fans think "Deadliest Catch: Bloodlines" isn't worth the watch).

"I was joking around in the beginning, and then it turned from a joke into reality, and here we are today," Josh said. "It was pretty crazy."